Koramangala loses another precious tree. After several mugging incidents, now the thieves have poached sandalwood by cutting down a tree in the 3rd Block 12th Main Road Park. This incident has happened in the wee hours of Thursday. Just a stone’s throw away, the Koramangala Police Chowki is situated. What’s the use say the residents. The thieves have managed to get away with the main trunk which could fetch them a good price. This tree was there even before the park existed and was protected by the residents of the 12th Main Road. Still one can find many sandalwood trees in the park. Koramangala that too 3rd block has posh bungalows and manned by 24 hours private security besides police beats. But this incident has shaken some of the residents in terms of security. The Koramangala Police were informed when walkers later in the morning noticed it. Soon a team of policemen arrived at the spot. A police complaint too has been filed by the 3rd Block Residents’ Welfare Association.
It may be recalled that three years ago during the first week of September 2011, two sandalwood trees that were at the entrance of the neighbouring 3rd Block playground were felled by the thieves. But then they had failed to take it away due to presence of private security persons.
Also at many places in Koramangala you can find such trees.
Another incident that reminds the residents is six years ago alert security guards had managed to foil an attempt to poach sandalwood in the posh Koramangala’s Raheja Residency premises also situated in 3rd block. A few months after this incident six years ago one more tree in St John’s Hospital premises was cut down by theives.
Koramangala is home to sandalwood trees since ages. Hence you can see it in many parks and some houses.
Sandalwood plays an integral part in Indian tradition. Often it is used for rituals and ceremonies. It is worth like any other valuable. It is used as fragrance in perfume and incense, and for woodworking. Sandalwood oil is used in Ayurveda treatment. The tree belongs to Santalaceae family. There are two species of the genus, Santalum; particuarly Santalum album and Santalum spicatum. Santalum album, or Indian sandalwood, is currently endangered.
Once the state was proud of exporting tonnes of the wood. Today, it is facing the danger of extinction.
Earlier, private cultivation of sandalwood was banned. Now cultivation is permitted following a recent amendment to over hundred years old forest and the tree preservation laws. Still harvesting and sale is vested with the Government.